Sunday Moments

April 5, 2020

Gathering Song: Dance With Me

with Kailina Mills and Phil Mathieu

Dance With Me

This is holy time,
we’re gathered together to worship you,
to love one another.
And as we pray, and as we sing,
and as we dance, and as we dream,
Oh, Lord, I beg of you, just this one thing:

Won’t you dance with me?
Throughout the heavens and beyond the seas,
up on the mountaintops,
roll with the breeze, come carry me.
Oh, Lord, won’t you dance with me.
(Author Unknown)

Prayer of the Day*

Sovereign God, you have established your rule in the human heart through the servanthood of Jesus Christ. By your Spirit, keep us in the joyful procession of those who with their tongues confess Jesus as Lord and with their lives praise him as Savior, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Matthew 21:1-11

When they had come near Jerusalem and had reached Bethphage, at the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go into the village ahead of you, and immediately you will find a donkey tied, and a colt with her; untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, just say this, ‘The Lord needs them.’ And he will send them immediately.” This took place to fulfill what had been spoken through the prophet, saying,
“Tell the daughter of Zion,
Look, your king is coming to you,
humble, and mounted on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.”
The disciples went and did as Jesus had directed them; they brought the donkey and the colt, and put their cloaks on them, and he sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, and others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and that followed were shouting,
“Hosanna to the Son of David!
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!”
When he entered Jerusalem, the whole city was in turmoil, asking, “Who is this?” The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”

Response to the Reading**

(If desired, wave branches and use homemade instruments)
Hosanna in the highest!
Hosanna in the highest!
Hosanna to Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee!
Hosanna in the highest!
Hosanna to the Son of David!
Hosanna in the highest!
Blessed is the one who comes in the name of the Lord!
Hosanna in the highest!
Blessed is the one who brings hope during difficult times!
Hosanna in the highest!
Hosanna in the highest heaven!
Hosanna in the highest!

Thought for the Day


When I hear “Dance With Me,” the gathering song heard in today’s Calumet Live Sessions, I am reminded of campers and staff singing this quiet yet joyous song during vespers in Luther Hall or in the Outdoor Chapel. “Dance With Me” can be heard on the beach after a candlelight service too. It’s a song that gathers campers and staff together for holy time…a time set apart from the regular day…a time to spend with God. And a time for remembering that God is with us as we as we pray, as we sing, as we dance, and as we dream. God is with in the ordinary times.

And yet God is with us now in these anything but ordinary times. What is ordinary has been shifted beyond our control. What was ordinary in gathering together on Palm Sunday in our churches, processing while waving our palm branches and singing together, has changed. Now we are gathering for worship with our families in our homes or gathering for holy time with Live Worship experiences online.

Looking at one of today’s Gospel readings, we are reminded that Jesus rode triumphantly into Jerusalem to cheers and hosannas, but that joyous entrance didn’t last long. After this day of rejoicing with people who believed Jesus brought hope and healing, the world changed quickly. People in power felt threatened. Followers and disciples became anxious to be associated with Jesus.

And what we know about our world today is changing quickly too. We can relate to being anxious. We can relate to being afraid. We can relate to being alone. Covid-19 has changed our world. But here is the good news. As we enter Holy Week, we are reminded that Jesus experienced fears and anxieties. Jesus was alone too.

And we are reminded in the Holy Week to come of the hope of resurrection…of new life…of Easter morning. In these different and unusual holy times where we are gathering, we are reminded that God is with us, as we pray, as we sing, as we dance, and as we dream…and as we wash our hands a hundred times a day!

I invite you to go find a branch, any branch will do, to wave today. Sing hosannas! And ask God to dance with you…to hold you…to be with you.

~Judy Smith, Family and Adult Director


Prayers of Intercession***

In our separate homes but gathered together in the Spirit, we pray for the church, the earth, the world, and all in need, responding to each petition with words from one of today’s psalms, “O Lord, save us."

A brief silence.

O triune God, God of majesty, mercy and might, hear and heed our fervent prayers: for the church around the world, that the faithful be nourished by your presence in the word; for pastors and bishops, that they be strengthened for their tasks of ministry; for all those who are assisting the digital sharing of worship materials; for guidance in keeping this Holy Week in devout prayer and praise;

A brief silence. O holy God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

For the earth, that it be saved from pollution and disregard; for endangered animals, that they and their habitats be protected; for scientists, that their knowledge of your earth will direct our society’s choices;

A brief silence. O creating God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

For peace through the world, especially in Syria and Afghanistan;
for an end to terrorism and religious violence;
for all elected leaders, that they see our crisis rightly and make judgments wisely;
for wisdom in distributing governmental economic aid;

A brief silence. O mighty God, we pray to you:  O Lord, save us.

For our distraught world facing the coronavirus;
for countries hardest hit, especially China,Italy, Spain, and the United States;
for those who grieve their dead;
for the sick and their families;
for those fearful of an unknown future;
for the millions of unemployed;
for children at home, that they be safe from abuse;
for those who have been led to rely on empty remedies;
for hospitals, in their desperate need for supplies;

A brief silence. O compassionate God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

For all who are facing the criminal justice system;
for those falsely accused of crime;
for those who are incarcerated, that they be kept safe;
for those who face isolation or execution;

A brief silence. O righteous God, we pray to you:  O Lord, save us.

For those whose needs we know, for those whose needs are hidden;
for those with prior illnesses whose treatments are now postponed;
for all who today will die;
for those who are homeless;
for all who are sick;
especially for those we name here;

A brief silence. O benevolent God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

And finally, for ourselves:

A longer period of silence. O loving God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

With thanks for the technology by which we stay connected;
with thanks for enough food;
with thanks for the support of our community of faith;
with thanks for the saints who struggled through life and died in you,
especially those Christian artists whose work has enriched our faith,
we praise your salvation now and unto our end.

A brief silence. O eternal God, we pray to you: O Lord, save us.

Into your hands, gracious God, we commend all for whom we pray,
trusting in your mercy, through the merits of Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.
Amen.

Let us pray.

Merciful God, accompany our journey through these forty days.  Renew us in the gift of baptism, that we may provide for those who are poor, pray for those in need, fast from self-indulgence, and above all that we may find our treasure in the life of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Palm Sunday Benediction****

And so it begins, we walk through this week
From palms now to passion, it’s Jesus we seek
Each moment we walk through these days now with Jesus,
Is time to see people, the way Jesus…sees us.

To watch for the ones, who need hope, who need kindness.
Seeking the light, not the darkness that blinds us.
As you walk through these days, may the love you now know
Be spread to each person you meet on the go.

And may God who now blesses and keeps you in love
Whose face shines upon you with grace from above
Who looks on you with such joy and such favor,
This God, three in One (+) gives you peace - life to savor. Amen!
*From sundaysandseasons.com.
©2020 Augsburg Fortress. All rights reserved. Reprinted by permission under Augsburg Fortress Liturgies
Annual License #SAS006505.

** https://www.ministrymatters.com/all/entry/10215/worship-at-home-for-palm- sunday?utm_source=newsletter&;utm_medium=email&;utm_content=Home%20Worship%20for%20Palm %20Sunday%20&;utm_campaign=MM-Newsletter-04-02-20

***Worship in the Home https://blogs.elca.org/worship/1875/

**** First Lutheran Church, St. Paul, Minnesota; http://www.eastsidefirst.com/first-things-first-blog/a- palm-sunday-blessing-and-benediction

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